Luke opens combat PT center

  • Published
  • By 2nd Lt. Ryan DeCamp
  • 56th Fighter Wing Public Affairs
Luke Air Force Base officials opened a combat physical training center Jan. 21 here, unveiling the fourth combat-oriented physical training venue the base has built or renovated in the past year.

The new venue adds 8,000 square feet of indoor physical training space to Luke Air Force Base.

"This is a typical facility you'll see in the area of responsibility when we deploy," said Lt. Col. John Thomas, the 56th Civil Engineer Squadron commander. "In the AOR, this could be used not just for PT but to house aircraft or perform maintenance. 

"The combat PT center has a translucent roof so it's designed to let light in and be energy efficient," Colonel Thomas said. "It is also air conditioned."

Fitness equipment lines the inside of the structure and includes squat racks, dumbbells, medicine balls, kettle bells and rowing machines among other equipment. The floor is comprised of rubber mats and inside the ring of equipment lies open space for individual or unit workouts.

Fitness center officials will provide functional fitness and martial arts training in the facility. Along with regularly-scheduled training classes, they will also provide Luke AFB Airmen with training in Air Force combatives and in the Marine Corps martial arts program with instructors from Luke AFB's Marine Corps Reserve 6th Engineer Support Battalion, Bulk Fuel Company Charlie.

Also planned are wrestling, boxing and self-defense clinics. Other events at the combat PT center include inviting guest speakers to teach proper nutrition, preparation for the Air Force PT test, and proper gymnastic and weight lifting techniques. 

"This looks just like the facilities I saw when I deployed," said Senior Airman Jose Hoskins, a 56th Security Forces Squadron patrolman.

"This facility will be great with the weather conditions in Arizona," Colonel Thomas said. The average daytime high at Luke last July was 105 degrees, and noting that temperatures on the flightline can reach 123 degrees.

"When I deployed I got to work with other branches of the military and they have facilities like this," said Staff Sgt. Abel Telles, a 56th Logistics Readiness Squadron fuels specialist. "That facility brought the branches together and was great for unit PT. It was also great for dealing with the heat."